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LUHS Board Names Massey New Dean Of Students


MINOCQUA – Lakeland Union High School has a new dean of students, Levi Massey, whose hiring came at the recent school board meeting on a 5-2 vote. His two-year contact begins with the 2018-19 school year.

His current duties are coordinating and teaching the alternative education programming for Sauke Prairie High School. His previous teaching experience has spanned five other school districts: Reedsburg, Stevens Point, Menomonie, Lodi and Lakeland Union High School, where he was the academy facilitator for the 2012-13 school year. Massey holds various licenses with the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction and he is expected to receive his principal license this June, according to the administration notes. He will be paid an annual salary of $60,000 and fills the vacancy left by Chad Gauerke, who was named assistant principal at Lakeland last month.

Barry Seidel and Emily Hallstrom voted against the hire at the May 21st board meeting. In his e-mail after the meeting to this reporter, Seidl laid out his reasons for that vote, noting he was against the position being filled and not in regard to Massy in particular: “Last year we had a 50% superintendent (and) a 50% principal (Jim Bouche) for a total of 1 FTE (full time equivalent),” Seidel wrote. “In addition, we had a full time assistant principal and a full time dean of students. The total number of people in these positions was 3 -- in 3 full time positions. “The board -- by refilling both the assistant principal and dean of students, positions after Jim was moved to part-time district administrator (60%) and Justin (Szews) to principal 100% and Chad Guarke to assistant principal at 100%, while hiring Massey for dean of students at 100% -- increased the number people in those positions by 60% of one full time employee. Now we have 3 people in full time positions and 1 person in a 60% position. “Both Jim and Justin defended the decision pointing to many statistics they offered at the (April) meeting,” Seidel continued. “ I don't feel the information they presented justified the need in these positions."

Both officials have said the full time dean of students position is much needed and the 2018-19 administrative FTE staff is comparable to the current school year, and actually down one FTE overall from the prior year. The board did not fill the part-time academy/Career Pathways director post for next year. “I had hoped they (members of the administration team) would come back to the board with a structure that would instead, eliminate the need for either a full time assistant principal, or the full time dean of students,” Seidel said. “I would have supported combining these positions, or eliminating them all together to form a new position that would have directly addressed the need presented in their statistics, in addition to other needs in the building. “In either case I would have preferred a model that reduced the number of people in those positions by 50% rather than the increase in 60% (of one position),” Seidel concluded.

Other hires at the May 21 board meeting included Jack Richards, who will become the school’s business teacher at an annual salary of $47,000. Currently, he is the technology coordinator and STEM teacher (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) at St. Matthew School in Champaign, Ill. He is also the network administrator and IT professional there. He is nationally certified as a Project Lead the Way educator. Another hire was that of Mercedes Mendez as school counselor at an annual salary of $47,000. A LUHS graduate, she recently graduated with a Master of Science – school counseling degree from UW-Stout, Menomonie. Jake Suter will become the new head boys hockey coach at a seasonal rate of $4,886. He played D1 college hockey for four years. At that April 23rd meeting, the board approved contracts and salaries for the following positions: Robert Way, director of curriculum, instruction & assessment pupil services, $103,641; Gregory Kopp, director of business services, $103,417; Stephanie Lewis, director of special education, $89,874; and Joshua Maltbey, IT administrator, $67,000. The salaries are for the first year of the two-year contracts.

All but the IT administrator (new contract) were based on a 2.13% Consumer Price Index (CPI) salary increase from the prior year. There were no other changes to the contracts from prior contracts. Each also receives a benefit package covering health and dental insurance, sick leave, etc.

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